I made these last Wednesday, when our friend Kathrin paid us a visit. Kathrin has been a vegetarian since she was 8. She has inspired me to make changes to my diet through our many conversations about food and vegetarianism. And now I eat mostly vegetarian, eating meat only a few times a week. Although I still love and enjoy the flavor and texture that meat provides, I don’t always crave it like I did in the past. Especially when enjoying dishes like this one. The chickpeas have a nice meaty texture, are full of protein and are seasoned with a wonderfully rich mixture of onions, garlic, sweet paprika and other spices. Don’t be put off by the length and list of this recipe; salads are very forgiving. The most crucial part of this recipe is in preparing the beans. However, even that process is simple. If you decide to use canned beans, try to find a brand where the beans are slightly firm and still have some bite to them.
Paprika Chickpea Tostada Bowls serves 4
For the tortilla bowls –
- 4 – 12” flour tortillas
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F)
- Place a single tortilla in a 8 or 9 inch round cake pan. Then place a 6” ramekin or cake pan in the center of the tortilla (see picture). This will help the tortilla from bubbling as it toast in the oven.
- Bake on the center rack of the oven for 5 minutes. Then, carefully remove the pan and bake for an additional 5-7 minutes, or until the tortilla is lightly toasted and the edges are golden. When you remove it from the oven it may still be slightly pliable. However, as it cools it will firm up.
- Repeat with remaining tortillas. Allow the tortillas to cool to room temperature.
For the salad –
- 6 cups Spring salad mix or salad greens of your choice
- 2 cups purple lettuce thinly sliced
- 2 medium tomatoes, large diced
- 1 medium carrot, shredded
- ½ cucumber, large diced
- ¼ cup shredded cheese, plus extra for topping
- ½ cup dressing of your choice or tzatziki, plus extra for topping
- Combine ingredients in a large bowl and set aside.
For the chickpeas –
- 3 cups cooked chickpeas (about 2 – 14 ounce cans, drained)
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2-3 garlic cloves, minced (about a tablespoon)
- ¾ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
- ½ teaspoon cayenne
- ¼ dried red chili flakes
- ⅛ teaspoon allspice
- Coconut oil or olive oil for sautéing
- Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the onions, garlic, salt and pepper and sauté until the onions are slightly translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Next, add the cumin, oregano, paprika, cayenne, red chili flakes, and allspice. Cook for one additional minute to cook out the raw cumin flavor. Add an extra tablespoon of oil or a splash of water if the pan has started to dry out.
- Add the chickpeas and combine with onions and spice mixture. Cook until beans are heated through, about 4-5 minutes. Turn off the heat and assemble the salad bowls.
- To assemble the salad bowls fill each bowl with an even amount of salad mix. Then, top the bowls with an even amount of chickpea mixture. Top with extra cheese or dressing if you desire. Enjoy immediately.